Trauma can occur as a result of various tragedies or traumas like child abuse, car accidents, or domestic violence — and impacts mental health and wellness. Every year it is estimated that 5,000,000 new children are added to this list of significantly traumatized children and, of these children, up to 50% will develop long-term debilitating after-effects of the trauma (Ziegler 2013).
Recent research has proven that trauma does in fact cause neurological changes and in effect does result in learning difficulties for many children (as cited in Craig, S. 2016). Furthermore, during times of national and/or local crisis educators need to be able to implement trauma-informed practices, which will benefit students and support them with practicing self-care. For example, the COVID-19 pandemic was associated with increased uncertainty and stress.
Acute stress causes areas of the brain to operate in a survival mode. Thinking will become more stringent; attention is focused on the present and staying safe and therefore planning and thinking ahead is difficult. Regulation of emotions is difficult and decision making is hampered. During stressful times, safety is threatened and power and control are lost. It is important to empower our youth with strategies for recovering from trauma and for promoting mental health and wellness.
This session will provide hands-on trauma-informed practices focusing on promoting mental health and wellness. All participants will be provided with various resources to best educate children affected by trauma.